Insurance sector, likely to witness dramatic increase during Covid-19: Dr S Prakash, MD, Star Health and Allied Insurance Co. Ltd

Dr S Prakash, Managing Director, Star Health and Allied Insurance

The insurance sector is likely to witness a dramatic increase specifically in India during the Covid-19 situation which will help the healthcare ecosystem and the economy overall. There is a lot of digital adaptation across the industry and we are learning a lot despite being working from home or remote locations. We all are digitally connected and doing our best to service the customers, says Dr S Prakash, Managing Director, Star Health and Allied Insurance Co. Ltd.

India traditionally has reported low insurance takers across all categories over the years. A research report from Indian Brand Equity Foundation reveals that the private health insurance schemes coverage in India so far is 18 percent of the population in urban areas and a little over 14 percent in rural areas.

Although the demand for insurance has somewhat gained a little popularity post the launch of Centre’s flagship insurance programme the Ayushman Bharat, which aims at insuring the underserved and vulnerable. But with outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic, insurance sector is likely to gain some momentum, experts opine so.

During a virtual discussion, Dr S Prakash, Managing Director, Star Health and Allied Insurance Co. Ltd said that he expects a dramatic increase in the insurance sector specifically in India during the Covid-19 situation which will help the healthcare ecosystem and economy overall. He spoke about the opportunity amidst the pandemic and the urgent need to embrace digital disruption to ensure business continuity.

Excerpts of his address:

Post pandemic, the insurance sector will witness an accelerated growth. There would be a massive change in the behaviour of the intermediary, customer and the insurer. We will have to bring in digital initiatives, robotics and automation for servicing the customer at one end and digital enablement of the businesses on the other end.

The world is trying to create the vaccine for coronavirus but I believe that the deadly virus is actually acting as a vaccine for the organisations while the organisations are trying to create an antibody to fight against the adversities of the virus.

The adjustments during these times are very painful however the results are pleasant. There is a lot of digital adaptation and we are learning a lot despite being working from home or remote locations. We are connected to our work so that we can provide services to the customers. We are trying our level best to offer efficiency to the insurance holders by imbibing digital excellence.

Insurance companies are working on reducing the claim waiting period. Even if the claim is for Covid-19, we are offering no claim bonus to the customers. The regulatory bodies and government bodies are working on standardizing the cost to the hospitals. Both the regulatory bodies and insurers are in initiating innovative tech-driven products to ensure more convenience to the end-users.

Covid specific products will also be launched to help the specific requirements of the customers. With this, people who are not to afford hefty premiums can avail the policies and benefits on low prices. This will help him to experience the benefits of insurance products and later he can migrate to mediclaim products.

I am hoping a dramatic increase in the insurance sector specifically in India during the Covid-19 situation which will help the healthcare ecosystem and economy overall.

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